By BOB VIGGIANO Courier-Post Staff
When Mike Carpati took over the head football coaching job at St. Joseph's at Camden, he promised to give the Bisons a new look in 1971.
Caputi kept his promise and St. Joe's showed off the new look yesterday with a 14-0 victory over visiting St. Thomas More of Philadelphia, in a game played in a steady drizzle at Farnham Park.
The Bisons had their share of troubles, however, as the offense suffered through a soso afternoon. While the offense was staggering, however, the defense came up with an effort seldom seen in recent years at the South Camden school.
The defense, led by end Stan Kisiel and linebacker Steve Moraca, held the visiting Tommies to 66 yards, 55 of which were on the ground. Kisiel rushed from his end slot and harassed St. Thomas quarterback Joe Colantuono so much, the latter was able to hit only one of 14 passes.
Moraca played a strong game from him linebacker spot, clogging up the middle and consequently stopping the St. Thomas running game.
"It sure feels good to win the first one," Caputi said. "The defense was just great but, as you can see, we have a lot of work to do on offense. I kind of expected this, though, because we spent most of our time trying to get the defense ready. Last year, our defense was terrible, so that's what we worked on the most."
The hard work proved to be the difference. The defense stopped the Tommies cold and also accounted for one of the two St. Joe's touchdowns.
The two teams were locked in a scoreless deadlock until late in the second period. St. Thomas punted to the Bisons' Gary Foster at the St. Joe's 27. The sophomore speedster broke a tackle at the 35 and headed for the sideline. He got two good blocks, broke a tackle at the losers' 45, and raced the rest of the way for the score. Quarterback Dan Delvecchio took the ball over for the two-point conversion after a St. Thomas penalty.
The score remained 8-0 until late in the fourth period. St. Thomas was pinned deep in its own territory and went to the pass in attempting to get on the board. As Colantuono attempted to throw, he was hit from the blind side by Tom Lauria. The ball popped loose on the 15 and Kisiel picked it up and lumbered into the end-zone to clinch the victory for the Bisons.
St. Joe's was held to 28 yards on the ground. The main culprit on the defense was Nick DiMario, whose stunting tactics spilled St. Joe's carriers in the backfield time after time.
"He's the best football player they have and he showed why today," Caputi said. "When we scouted them last week he was doing the same thing. We told our guards to pinch a little more, but he still got through and hurt us."
Despite the offensive problems, however, Caputi was pleased with the team's overall performance. He had promised St. Joe's would be a scrappy team and he had kept his word.
STATISTICS ST SJ First Downs 5 5 Net Yardage 66 35 Rushing Yardage 55 28 Passing Yardage 11 7 Return Yardage 48 134 Passes 14 4 Passes Completed 1 1 Had Interceptcd 0 0 Punts 4 4 Punting Average 28 37 Fumbles Lost by 3 3 Yards Penalized 61 30 Posted: November 3, 1999
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This space provided by Michael
P. McDowell, Class of '72,
author of Emprise, The Quiet Pools and The Trigger.